Privacy Policy

Thank you for visiting the Web site of the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE). The agency is committed to respecting and protecting your privacy as a visitor to our Web site at

The ISBE takes the issue of privacy very seriously and values the trust you place in us each time you use our services and access this Web site. This Privacy Policy describes the practices and policies we have put into place to safeguard any personal information that may be gathered and used by ISBE during your visit to our Web site.

The policy may change from time to time without notice so please check back periodically. If you have any questions about our privacy policies, we encourage you to contact us using any of the methods outlined at the end of this Privacy Policy.

Personal Information and Choice

"Personal information" is information about an individual that is readily identifiable to that specific individual. Personal information includes personal identifiers such as an individual's name, address, phone number, and social security number. A domain name or Internet Protocol address is not considered personal information.

We collect no personal information about you unless you voluntarily participate in an activity that asks for information (e.g., sending an e-mail or participating in a survey). If you choose not to participate in these activities, your choice will in no way affect your ability to use any other feature of the ISBE web site. If personal information is requested on the web site or volunteered by the user, state law and the federal Privacy Act of 1974 (5 U.S.C. 552a) may protect it. However, this information is a public record once you provide it, and may be subject to public inspection and copying if not otherwise protected by federal or state law. [e.g., Electronic Communications Privacy Act (ECPA) (18 U.S.C. 2510-2520, 2701-2709); Illinois Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) (5 ILCS 140/1 et seq.); Data Processing Confidentiality Act (30 ILCS 585/0.01 et seq.).]

What Information Is Automatically Collected?

If, during your visit to the ISBE Web site, you just browse or download information, the following information about your visit will be automatically collected and stored in the Web server's log:

  1. Your Internet Protocol address (not the e-mail address).
  2. The type of web browser used to access this site (Internet Explorer, Netscape, etc.). (Web pages do not always display the same on every type or version of web browser and thus must be coded for appropriate access.)

Our Web site logs do not contain personally identifiable information, and we make no attempt to link them with the individuals who browse this Web site.

What Information Is Collected Only with Your Permission?

If you visit our Web site and participate in a survey, fill out a Web-based form, or send an e-mail, the following additional information will be collected:

  1. Internet Correspondence: If an individual sends ISBE an e-mail message or fills out a Web-based form with a question or comment that contains personal identifying information, that information will only be used to respond to the request and to analyze trends. The message may be redirected to another government agency or person who is better able to answer the question. We may retain that email address and other information as appropriate for official business purposes.
  2. Surveys: Any information you volunteered in response to a survey. Survey information is used for the purpose designated.

How Do We Use the Information We Collect?

The information that we gather both automatically and with your permission during your visit to our Web site is used in the following ways:

  • Monitor, review, measure, and analyze Web site utilization
  • Modify and enhance the Web site
  • Improve the content and design of our Web site
  • Determine the need for new programs and services
  • Respond to your requests
  • Monitor the changing information needs of site visitors
  • Monitor and improve our customer service efforts
  • Study general usage habits and demographic information for our own research purposes
  • Unique IP addresses are counted to determine the number of visitors to each web page during specific time frames. Analysis of the number of visitors helps to determine how, where or if the page will be delivered in the future.
  • Distribute news and other information requested by Web visitors

Access and Correction of Personal Information

Upon request, we provide site visitors with access to the following:

  • A description of information (e.g., name, address, phone number) that we maintain about them
  • Communications that the visitor has directed to our site

Individuals can access, review, and request correction to this information, as necessary, by contacting us at the address at the end of this Privacy Policy.

Our Use of Cookies

A cookie is a small amount of data that is sent to your browser from a web server and stored on your computer's hard drive. For example, a Web site may use a cookie to store and sometimes track information about your preferences or the pages you last visited. Cookies can be used to provide useful online features for their visitors, such as customized pages and personalized services.

The ISBE Web site uses two types of cookies: session cookies and persistent cookies. Session cookies are small text files placed on your hard drive by some websites and are intended for use only in the browser session in which they are created. Persistent cookies maintain information over more than one browser session. ISBE uses them for online authentication to the password-protected classes of the IVHS web site. After a user enters a Login ID and password, the cookie activates details about your computer system, line connection and browser version so you will be directed to the server designed to provide you with optimum performance.

Your browser software can be set to reject all cookies, or to ask you if you would like to accept or decline a cookie from a particular site before it is set.

Registration for Access

The ISBE Web site does requires registration to access certain forms requiring digital signature via the ISBE Web Application System (IWAS). At registration, you are asked to provide name, login name, password, and an email address. Once registered, you may enter the password protected website by keying in your login name and password. If the login name and password match, you are granted access to forms requiring digital signature.

Our Children's Privacy Policy

Student Data Privacy Fact Sheet PDF format (2014)
Student Data Privacy - Myth Busters PDF format (2014)

ISBE and the State of Illinois are committed to protecting children's privacy and complying fully with the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998. (COPPA) (15 U.S.C. 6501 et seq.).

The ISBE site features selected information and services that would be of interest to children 13 and under.

We recommend that parents and teachers supervise children's Internet explorations. It is particularly important for parents to guide their children when children are asked to provide personal information online.

If you are under the age of 13, you are not authorized to provide us with personally identifying information, and we will not use any such information in our database or other data collection activities.

Users are cautioned that the collection of personal information volunteered by children on-line or by e-mail will be treated the same as information given by an adult and may be subject to public access.

Links to Other Sites

The ISBE Web site often provides a number of links that offer direct access to other useful or interesting educational web sites holding potential value to site visitors. Inclusion of the other sites by links does not imply any endorsement by ISBE of the material or information on the other sites.

We encourage users to review the privacy policy of each linked site, as we are not responsible for the privacy practices of other sites. Users assume sole responsibility for use of third-party links and any disclaimers set forth herein are applicable to such third-party sites.

We will make efforts to notify you when you are leaving our site and you may be subjected to different privacy policies than those we have established for our Web site.

Security of Communications

ISBE recognizes that many people are concerned about the privacy and protection of information as it is transmitted over the Internet. You should keep in mind that the possibility exists for unauthorized individuals to intercept any e-mail message you send over the Internet. In some cases, information can be encrypted (scrambled or encoded) to make it very difficult to read if it is intercepted during communication. Certain technology and practices allow Web sites to provide an increased level of security for your personal and health-related information when appropriate. We use the following practices on our Web site to enhance the level of security for communication and the transmission of personal information:

  • We use industry-standard encryption technologies when transferring and receiving consumer data exchanged with our site.
  • We have taken reasonable steps to ensure the integrity and confidentiality of personally identifiable information that you may provide.
  • When we transfer and receive certain types of sensitive information, we redirect visitors to a secure server.
  • We have appropriate security measures in place in our physical facilities to protect against the loss, misuse, or alteration of information that we have collected from you at our site
  • We use e-mail forms to allow our customers to ask questions about our services and programs. However, these are not hosted on a secure server. The possibility exists that unauthorized individuals may intercept e-mail messages.
  • We are not responsible for the privacy of e-mail messages except those stored in our system.

Changes in Our Privacy Policy

ISBE reserves the right, at its sole discretion, to modify this policy at any time without notice. ISBE will regularly review and revise this Privacy Policy. If our information practices change we will post the policy changes to the Web site. Changes shall be effective immediately. If you are concerned about how your information is used, you should check this Privacy Policy periodically.

Web Site Contact Information

If you have questions about our privacy policy, or believe that this site is not following its stated information policy, please contact us.

Privacy Officer
Multimedia & Web Services
Illinois State Board of Education
100 North First Street
Springfield, IL  62777-0001

This Privacy Policy was last revised on February 10, 2003.